A new loan facility to help farmers who won’t receive their BPS payment on day one has been announced today by Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, Lesley Griffiths.
The existing Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) payment window of 2 December 2019 until 30 June 2020 will be maintained, whilst a BPS Loan Scheme for farmers who don’t receive their first payment on that date will also be provided. The loan for farmers who do not receive their BPS payment will be worth up to 90% of the claim value.
It is hoped the BPS payment and loan scheme will provide certainty to farmers concerned about cash flow in the upcoming months as they approach the UK’s Exit from the European Union and the winter period. Following stakeholder and industry feedback, the loan scheme will also be renamed the ‘BPS 2019 Support Scheme’.
Minister Lesley Griffiths said:
“With uncertainty surrounding the impact of Brexit we are determined to support farmers in every way we can and ensure they can cope with the challenges they face in the upcoming months.
“With the UK edging ever closer to leaving the EU without a deal it is vital we prepare and provide as much assistance as possible to Welsh farmers. I have made it a priority to ensure we plan sensibly and have been working with our partners, farming unions, charities and many others to ensure our industry is in the best possible position to deal with Brexit.
“This payment window and support scheme should help provide some assurances to farmers. It will help them plan their finances in the longer term and manage their immediate cash flow too.”
The support scheme would be available to all, but only paid to farm businesses who ‘opt-in’ to the scheme, and only if their BPS claim is not ready on the first day of the payment window.